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Getting angry sometimes is totally normal. It can be a healthy response to let us know something is not OK or something has gone wrong. We all find stuff in life that makes us angry. When our anger is used carefully and constructively, it can be a powerful force for helping us to get our voices heard and make changes in our lives for the better.

What is anger?

Anger is a normal and valid emotion and everyone can feel angry sometimes. But just because anger is a normal emotion, it doesn’t mean that it’s easy to cope with! It can be really uncomfortable to talk about and many of us find it hard to express it openly. If it is affecting your life and relationships and is causing you or others concern, you might need help with it. Anger can present itself in people differently. Some people are aggressive towards others and some people turn the anger on themselves.

Some of the harmful ways that people deal with their anger include:

  • Shouting at people
  • Breaking stuff and throwing things
  • Hurting other people physically and emotionally
  • Harming themselves

Although these ways of dealing with our anger and frustration might make us feel better at the time, we may come to regret them, especially if we end up hurting ourselves or the people that we care about.

Equally, we might ‘bottle up’ our anger and not express it at all. Although it can seem easier at the time not to say anything, suppressing anger can make us feel much worse later on.


Why do we get angry? 

Let’s be honest, the word we live in can be tough. There are rules constantly imposed on us and also a lot of injustice in the world. No wonder we can feel angry!

Anger is our internal fire alarm, it lets us know something in the oven is burning or that something is happening to you or around you that is not right. Sometimes, we know why the fire alarm is going off and sometimes we don’t.

Anger is often emotion at the tip of the iceberg – meaning it’s often what we see as a result of our feelings. It is important to understand what is underneath – what is fuelling that anger. That can be anything in our lives, from a difficult family environment, experiencing bullying, struggles with education and/or employment.

How do I get help for my anger?

Learning to find ways to deal with our thoughts and feelings can be really helpful before things build up to us losing it – this might include:

  • Learning to identify our triggers and what situations might contribute to us getting angry
  • Learning tips and techniques that help in those situations to help us express our thoughts and feelings
  • Finding healthy ways of managing those things we can’t change.

Here at OTR, we want to help you to find out why and what is causing you to feel anger, and work from there to give you tools and tips to help with your emotions.

Click here to download our ‘Responding Positively to Anger’ resource

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